Stafford taught for one academic year — in the English department at Manchester College in Indiana, a college affiliated with the Church of the Brethren where he had received training during his time in Civilian Public Service. One striking feature of his career is its late start. Stafford was 46 years old when his first major collection of poetry was published, Traveling Through the Dark , which won the National Book Award for Poetry.
It describes encountering a recently killed doe on a mountain road. Before pushing the doe into a canyon, the narrator discovers that she was pregnant and the fawn inside is still alive. Stafford had a quiet daily ritual of writing and his writing focuses on the ordinary. His gentle quotidian style has been compared to Robert Frost.
Stafford said this in a interview:. I keep following this sort of hidden river of my life, you know, whatever the topic or impulse which comes, I follow it along trustingly. And I don't have any sense of its coming to a kind of crescendo, or of its petering out either. It is just going steadily along. Stafford was a close friend and collaborator with poet Robert Bly.
Despite his late start, he was a frequent contributor to magazines and anthologies and eventually published fifty-seven volumes of poetry.
James Dickey called Stafford one of those poets "who pour out rivers of ink, all on good poems. In , he was named Poet Laureate of Oregon; his tenure in the position lasted until In , he won the Western States Book Award for lifetime achievement in poetry.
Stafford died at his home in Lake Oswego, Oregon on August 28, From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other people named William Stafford, see William Stafford.
West of Your City, Talisman Press, Traveling through the Dark, Harper, The Rescued Year, Harper, Eleven Untitled Poems, Perishable Press, Poems, Perishable Press, Temporary Facts, Duane Schneider Press, In the Clock of Reason, Soft Press, Someday, Maybe, Harper, No one else can guide me.
I must follow my own weak, wandering, diffident impulses. A strange bonus happens. At times, without my insisting on it, my writings become coherent; the successive elements that occur to me are clearly related.
They lead by themselves to new connections. Sometimes the language, even the syllables that happen along, may start a trend. Sometimes the materials alert me to something waiting in my mind, ready for sustained attention.
At such times, I allow myself to be eloquent, or intentional, or for great swoops Treacherous! Not to be trusted! But I do not insist on any of that; for I know that back of my activity there will be the coherence of my self, and that indulgence of my impulses will bring recurrent patterns and meanings again. This attitude toward the process of writing creatively suggests a problem for me, in terms of what others say.
That precious interval I am unable to bridge by skill. Yet another attitude I find necessary: Even I will realize, and even at the time, that it is not negotiable. It will be like practice. In conversation I allow myself random remarks—in fact, as I recall, that is the way I learned to talk—so in writing I launch many expendable efforts. A result of this free way of writing is that I am not writing for others, mostly; they will not see the product at all unless the activity eventuates in something that later appears to be worthy.
My guide is the self, and its adventuring in the language brings about communication. By ticking this box you consent to the information you provide on this form being used to keep in touch with you and to provide updates.
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A Way of Writing. by William Stafford. A writer is not so much someone who has something to say as he is someone who has found a process that will bring about new things he would not have thought of if he had not started to say them.
A Way of Writing by William Stafford A writer is not so much someone who has something to say as he is someone who has found a process that will bring about new things he would not have thought of if he had not started to say them.
In William Stafford's essay A Way Of Writing, he writes, "If I [write] down something, that thing will help the next thing come, and I'm off." was asked by Shelly Notetaker on May 31 students have viewed the answer on StudySoup. View the answer. Sep 03, · The method that, William Stafford, uses to create his writing is something he developed on his own. He describes his way of putting words on the paper as something that should flow like water from all around your body, everything you feel should be accepted and manifested into words that can describe you and your emotions.
Essays and criticism on William Stafford - Critical Essays. When once asked what made him start writing poetry, Stafford replied, “What made you stop?”. A Way of Writing – by William Stafford I agree with William Stafford, writing can be one of life’s “great, free human activities.” In my life, I have used writing not only for educational purposes, but as a way to free my mind and heart of what is bothering me, to record my memories, or to just be silly.